Posts Tagged ‘friendship’

Poetry Friday is hosted this week by Michelle Kogan

Honestly, I’m not sure 
if I’ll be home soon. 
I’m glad you were able to see me.
I love how you hear a different story from my eyes,

how we find honesty under the moon– 
a strawberry moon
like a beacon through the trees. 

You read me with an elder’s wisdom.
Tears well up when you hold my heart with your eyes,
how they flow with knowing.
Your own tears leaking onto your cheek. 

You never even met my father,
but he was speaking through you,
his presence nowhere and everywhere. 

Honestly, the well of deep compassion 
grows when watered with our tears. 

Margaret Simon, for Carolyn

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Ramona has the Round up today at Pleasures from the Page.

Life has been a challenge for many these days. I’ve adopted the mantra “We Can Do Hard Things” from Glennon Doyle. Because we can, and we do. But today, Ramona suggests we reflect on celebrations. I have a list that includes celebrations big and small.

  1. A family wedding! It’s always joyful to spend time with family. Our family (including all my children and grands) gathered in Seattle, Washington a few weeks ago for the wedding of my niece. The setting was on the Puget Sound facing the Olympic Mountains at sunset. Six days later my sister-in-law brought me to a beach nearby the wedding location as I recovered from Covid. I celebrate beauty, beach, fresh air, and family love!

2. Flowers are blooming! My friend and former student Jennifer and her husband grow fields of sunflowers and hold “You Pick” days. (Petite Anse Farm) I took my grandson Thomas “Tuffy” on Sunday morning (This was our church service) and picked a bucket of sunflowers. Thomas enjoyed having his own pair of scissors and feeding the chickens with Farmer Andy. I celebrate summer, flowers, and farmers who adore curious toddlers.

3. I was absent the last week of school. My colleague next door, Erica, packed up all the books on my shelves (I have a lot of books!) to prepare for summer cleaning. I went to check on things on Monday and was met with this amazing surprise. Also my principal’s daughter, who is 10 going on 11, was there to help with “Tuffy” while I did a few more things. I celebrate the kindness and consideration of colleagues and teaching in a school with this welcoming environment.

4. My friend and unofficial spiritual director Ellen sends me daily quotes. I am amazed how many times the quote she sends hits the exact right spot. Last week when I was recovering she sent me this list. Just what I needed. I celebrate the spiritual guidance of others who give us strength when we need it.

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Thank you to Two Writing Teachers for creating an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write and share.

My milkweed/monarch journey began a little more than a year ago in a school garden. There I met Meadow. (Yes, Meadow is the name of a naturalist in our area.) She taught me about capturing monarch caterpillars and caring for them through emergence to a butterfly. (Slice of Life post here.)

I wanted some host plants of my own, so I took cuttings from the garden and planted them in a flower bed. This spring while sheltering at home, I was able to nurture caterpillars on my screen porch.

In May, I was visiting a friend, safely distanced in her backyard, and she gave me a few milkweed seed pods. I had no idea how to cultivate them, but I planted them in two pots of potting soil and kept them watered.

Milkweed seed pods

A miracle of Mother Nature, the seeds sprouted. I had 42 little seedlings about 3 inches high. I could have taken a few and planted them in my flower bed, but what about all the others? I couldn’t bear the thought of letting them die.

I ordered some cheap plastic pots on Amazon, and planted each little sprout. Putting out a call on Facebook, I had some takers. The surprising part for me was how excited the receivers were. And how welcomed the visits!

On Sunday, Sisters Sarah and Emily came by to “rescue” some seedlings. I taught Emily in elementary school. She is now headed to 10th grade, so it was great to see her. (Oh, how I just wanted to hug her!)

Mary and Brittany arrived at the same time, donning masks and staying distanced. We had a wonderful time getting to know each other in a more intimate way than Facebook allows.

On Monday, I delivered seedlings to some friends and took a walk through a beautiful backyard and met a new grandbaby.

This morning, I noticed an opened seed pod on one of my milkweed plants. The cycle continues…

Milkweed seed pod

Milkweed seeds provide life for the butterfly and hope for this lonely planet, as well as Joy to this lonely planter.

Notice the green seed pods on the milkweed plant.

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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

I met Julianne first on her blog, To Read To Write To Be. She writes about as often as I do reflecting on her life and teaching. I really do not remember why we connected so easily. We met in person at NCTE14 at the Kidblog.org booth in the grand exhibit hall. Then last summer she was coming to New Orleans with her daughter to look at colleges, so I made plans to meet her. We spent the whole day together and never stopped talking. What fun to show her parts of the city I love. We decided then to be roomies for NCTE15. And now we are close friends.

Today is Spiritual Thursday, a day created by another blogging friend, Holly. We are writing about each other’s One Little Words. Julianne’s word is the theme for today, Admire.

It fits Julianne so well. She is one of those people who stands beneath your wings and helps you fly. She does this for her friends. She does this for her family and for her students.

I think the reason Julianne chose this word was completely unselfish. She wants to admire others in the same way you notice a sunset.

Admire, notice, see, celebrate.

In my own life, I surround myself with people I admire, my family, my friends, my communities. I evaluate and then emulate.

But there are always times when I fall short. I am not the person I want to be, especially when things are not as they should be.

On Sunday, a group of women I belong to, The Berry Queens, held our annual Hats and Hallelujahs brunch. I wasn’t planning to go until a colleague offered a hat that she had won a few years ago at the same event. Like Goldilocks, the hat was just right.

I was so glad I went and not because of the food (delicious cheese grits, bacon, egg casserole, and biscuits) or the singing (a local gospel choir) or the raffle or any of those superficial reasons. I sat next to a woman whom I hadn’t seen in a while. She has been through a great deal of loss (her husband, then her mother), and she moved away. We were talking about tough stuff that you go through and how life can be a cruel teacher. She talked so honestly about her growth and her faith that instead of me offering her comfort, she was giving that to me.

In the end, we stood together and sang “Amazing Grace” knowing in our hearts the true meaning of the words we were singing, “I once was lost and now I’m found. Was blind, but now I see.”

Admiration is opening the window and looking out, letting God speak to you through others. He always will. You just have to notice.

Join the Spiritual Thursday round up at Reading, Teaching, Learning.

Join the Spiritual Thursday round up at Reading, Teaching, Learning.

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Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

This story of friendship begins in one of the smallest towns in Mississippi in the early 60’s. Memory is a curious thing. I don’t remember much from age 7 to 12, but I have vivid memories of this time in Centerville when I was 3-5 years old. Sarah and Larry were my brother and my best friends. We must’ve spent every day together. I can remember climbing trees and playing hide and seek. I remember Larry’s fire red hair and Sarah’s wavy black hair. I remember the scent of live oak trees. Vivid memories.

I met Sarah again a few years ago, and we became Facebook friends. We connected and found many ways we are alike. I have 3 daughters in their twenties; she has four. We both have amazing husbands we adore. But more than that, I think when you’ve known someone all your life, something special is there, always.

I am celebrating reconnecting with Sarah. My husband and I took an impromptu trip to Houston. We dropped in on Sarah and her husband Reese, enjoyed hours of wine and cheese. Amazing Reese (this is what Sarah calls him) makes an amazing homemade bread. And then before we left, they broke out the guitar and ukelele and serenaded us. A wonderful blessed evening.

Sarah is a wonderful artist, and she blogs at Finding my Glasses.

Tilly, the wonder therapy dog, comforted us with her presence.

Tilly, the wonder therapy dog, comforted us with her presence.

Lifetime friends

Lifetime friends

That's Amore!

That’s Amore!

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